FILMSMAY 2016

(Hibbs 1965) Perry Mason: Ep.249 ― The Case of the 12th Wild­cat
(Sil­ber­ston 2002) Foyle’s War: Ep.1 ― The Ger­man Woman
(McEveety 1982) Voy­agers: Ep.7 ― The Day the Rebs Took Lin­coln
(Crane & Pintoff 1982) Voy­agers: Ep.8 ― Old Hick­ory and the Pirate
(Wise­man 2007) Die Hard 4: Live Free or Die Hard
(de Leon 1959) Ter­ror Is a Man
(Trivas 1959) The Head [Die Nackte und der Satan]
(Gon­za­lez 2013) The Wiz­ards Return: Alex vs. Alex
(Con­nor 1977) The Peo­ple That Time For­got
(Marks 1965) Perry Mason: Ep.250 ― The Case of the Wrath­ful Wraith
(Gunn 2014) Guardians of the Galaxy
(McEveety 1982) Voy­agers: Ep.9 ― The Trav­els of Marco… and Friends
(Sav­ille 1950) Kim Read more »

First-time listening for May 2016

27570. (Pierre de Manchicourt) Missa Veni Sancte Spir­i­tus
27571. (Pierre de Manchicourt) Motet: Reges ter­rae
27572. (Pierre de Manchicourt) Motet: O virgo vir­ginum
27573. (Pierre de Manchicourt) Chan­son: Long temps mon coeur lan­guis­soit
27574. (Pierre de Manchicourt) Chan­son: Faulte dar­gent cest douleur non pareille
27575. (Pierre de Manchicourt) Chan­son: Ô cru­aulté logée en grand beualté
27576. (Pierre de Manchicourt) Morette à 5: Maria Mag­da­lene
27577. (Pierre de Manchicourt) Motet: Usqe­quo piger dormies
27578. (Blake Shel­ton) Blake Shel­ton
27579. (Arc­tic Mon­keys) Five Min­utes With Arc­tic Mon­keys EP
27580. (Fetty Wap) Fetty Wap
27581. (Vam­pire Week­end) Giv­ing Up the Gun EP
27582. (Twenty One Pilots) Twenty One Pilots
27583. (Jón Leifs) String Quar­tet #2 Vita et Mors, Op.36
27584. (Deer­hunter) Turn It Up Fag­got
27585. (Jef­fer­son Star­ship) Earth

READINGMAY 2016

26703. (Thomas Paine) A Let­ter Addressed to the Abbé Ray­nal on the Affairs of North Amer­ica
26705. (O. Sig­mars­son, et al) Dynamic Magma Mix­ing Revealed by the 2010 Eyjaf­jal­la­jökull
. . . . . Erup­tion [arti­cle]
26706. (Witold Rybczyn­ski) City Life
26707. (Tor­ben Bjarke Ballin) Ris­ing Waters and the Processes of Diver­si­fi­ca­tion and
. . . . . Uni­fi­ca­tion in Mate­r­ial Cul­ture — the Flood­ing of Dog­ger­land and Its Effect on NW
. . . . . Euro­pean Pre­his­toric Pop­u­la­tions between c. 13,000 and 1,500 cal BC [arti­cle]
26708. (Shah Nadeem Ahmad) A New Sasan­ian Hel­met in the Musée d’Art Clas­sique de
. . . . . Mou­g­ins [arti­cle]
26709. (Laura Diet­rich) A New World Order: The Spread of Chan­nelled Ware in Late Bronze
. . . . . Age and Early Iron Age Tran­syl­va­nia [arti­cle]
26710. (Gil J. Stein & Rana Özbal) A Tale of Two Oiku­me­nai: Vari­a­tion in the Expan­sion­ary
. . . . . Dynam­ics of ‘Ubaid and Uruk Mesopotamia [arti­cle]
26711. (Bern­hard Weninger, et al) Abrupt Cli­mate Forc­ing Observed at Early Neolithic Sites in
. . . . . South-East Europe and the Near East [arti­cle]
26712. (Ethan Mord­den) Broad­way Babies — The Peo­ple Who Made the Amer­i­can Musi­cal Read more »

Handel’s Fireworks

16-05-31 MUS Fireworks

Well, I have no short­age of record­ings of this, one of the most pop­u­lar works of baroque music. I have per­for­mances con­ducted by Fen­nell, Gar­diner, Hog­wood, Mar­riner, Maier, Pin­nock, Savall, Stokowski, and War­chal, and I’ve prob­a­bly heard a dozen oth­ers. Most lis­ten­ers divide them into two cat­e­gories: 1) record­ings using orig­i­nal period instru­ments, or an approx­i­ma­tion thereof; 2) record­ings using twen­ti­eth cen­tury instru­ments in a stan­dard con­cert for­mat. I’m not going to sneer at the lat­ter group. Han­del was as prag­matic a show­man as music ever pro­duced, and he would have been per­fectly happy hear­ing Stokowski’s won­der­ful and totally inau­then­tic ver­sion, though he might have told Mar­riner to give his per­for­mance a lit­tle more zetz. But on the whole, I pre­fer the period instru­ment ver­sions, and of those, I’d pick Jordi Savall’s for my desert island music col­lec­tion. This ver­sion has zetz-aplenty.

Han­del actu­ally pro­duced two very spe­cific ver­sions. One was for 24 oboes, 12 bas­soons and a con­tra­bas­soon, nine nat­ural trum­pets, nine nat­ural horns, three pairs of ket­tle­drums, and side drums play­ing ad libi­tum. This was the one intended for the orig­i­nal out­door per­for­mance on April 27, 1749, in a Lon­don park south of the Thames, to accom­pany the fire­works cel­e­brat­ing the end of the War of Aus­trian Suc­ces­sion and the sign­ing of the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle. Despite the rain, and the damp­ened fire­works set­ting fire to part of the pavil­ion, it was a pop­u­lar suc­cess, and caused a three hour traf­fic jam on the Lon­don Bridge. This was the noisy, dirty, exu­ber­ant Lon­don of which Samuel John­son said “You find no man, at all intel­lec­tual, who is will­ing to leave Lon­don. No, Sir, when a man is tired of Lon­don, he is tired of life; for there is in Lon­don all that life can afford.” The music cap­tures this mood exactly. The pro­duc­ers had cau­tioned Han­del that the King did not like stringed instru­ments, so he grudg­ingly omit­ted them. For a later, indoor per­for­mance, Han­del changed the arrange­ment to add vio­lins, vio­las, cel­los and dou­ble basses. Mod­ern per­for­mances, whether on “authen­tic” instru­ments or not, usu­ally use this ver­sion. But Han­del sel­dom had to kow­tow, as most com­posers did, to the demands of aris­to­cratic patron­age. He was the first com­poser to build a gen­uinely com­mer­cial and pop­u­lar music busi­ness, answer­ing to the tastes of London’s cos­mopoli­tan pub­lic and not to church and court. His operas and ora­to­rios, for exam­ple, where often on Old Tes­ta­ment themes because they could appeal to both Chris­t­ian and Jew­ish audiences.

This was one of the first works of baroque music that I heard as a child, and I was mes­mer­ized by the catchy melodies, and the way the var­i­ous instru­men­tal parts called and answered each other, and wove together like the snakes in a celtic orm. After count­less hear­ings, it still gives me pleasure.

If you would like to see a rather quaint trib­ute to Han­del, dig up the 1942 Rank Stu­dios biopic The Great Mr.
Han­del, directed by Nor­man Walker and star­ring William Lawson.

Handel (center left) on the Thames with King George and entourage.

Han­del (cen­ter left) on the Thames with King George and entourage.

FILMSAPRIL 2016

(Hitch­cock 1951) Strangers on a Train
(Meza-Leon 2015) Rick and Morty: Ep.19 ― Inter­di­men­sional Cable 2: Tempt­ing Fate
(Pol­cino 2015) Rick and Morty: Ep.20 ― Look Who’s Purg­ing Now
(Cardiff 1964) The Long Ships
(Archer 2015) Rick and Morty: Ep.21 ― The Wed­ding Squanch­ers
(Affleck 1998) The Simp­sons: Ep.196 ― This Lit­tle Wiggy
(Gray 1998) The Simp­sons: Ep.197 ― Simp­son Tide
(Hughes 1987) Planes, Trains & Auto­mo­biles
(Scott 1998) The Simp­sons: Ep.198 ― The Trou­ble With Tril­lions
(Kirk­land 1998) The Simp­sons: Ep.199 ― Girly Edi­tion
(Rear­don 1998) The Simp­sons: Ep.200 ― Trash of the Titans
(Stevens 1936) Swing Time
(Richard­son 1977) Joseph Andrews Read more »

First-time listening for April 2016

27442. (Louis-Albert Bourgault-Ducoudray) Rhap­sodie cam­bodgi­enne
27443. (Arca) Mutant
27444. (Kishori Amonkar) Raga Gaud Mal­har
27445. (Rae Srem­murd) Sremm­Life
27446. (Flo­rence Price) Mis­sis­sippi River Suite
27447. (Walk the Moon) Walk the Moon
27448. (Court­ney Bar­nett) The Dou­ble EP: A Sea of Split Peas
27449. (Deven­dra Ban­hart) Oh Me Oh My… The Way the Day Goes by the Sun Is Set­ting
. . . . . Dogs Are Dream­ing Love Songs of the Christ­mas Spirit
27450. (Float­ing Points) Elae­nia
27451. (Jacob Obrecht) Salve Regina for 4 Voices
27452. (Jacob Obrecht) Venit ad Petrum in Mode 8
Read more »

READINGAPRIL 2016

26647. [3] (Jonathan Swift) Gulliver’s Trav­els [Trav­els Into Sev­eral Remote Nations of the
. . . . . World, in Four Parts, by Lemuel Gul­liver]
26648. (Michel de Mon­taigne) De l’amitié [arti­cle] [read in Eng­lish at 9575]
26649. (Torsten Gün­ther, et al) Ancient Genomes Link Early Farm­ers from Ata­puerca in Spain
. . . . . to Modern-day Basques [arti­cle]
(Éti­enne de La Boétie) Oeu­vres com­plètes d’Estienne de la Boétie [ed. Paul Bon­ne­fon]:
. . . . 26650. (Paul Bon­ne­fon) Pré­face [pref­ace]
. . . . 26651. (Paul Bon­ne­fon) Esti­enne de la Boétie, sa vie, ses ouvrages et ses rela­tions avec
. . . . . . . . . . Mon­taigne [arti­cle]
. . . . 26652. (Éti­enne de La Boétie) Dis­cours de la servi­tude volon­taire [arti­cle] [read in
. . . . . . . . . . Eng­lish at 2935]
. . . . 26653. (Michel de Mon­taigne) Adver­tisse­ment au Lecteur [pref­ace]
. . . . 26654. (Michel de Mon­taigne) A Mon­sieur de Lansac, cheva­lier de l’Ordre du Roy,
. . . . . . . . . . con­seiller en son con­seil privé, sur­in­ten­dant de ses finances, et cap­i­taine de
. . . . . . . . . . cent gentils-hommes de sa mai­son [let­ter]
. . . . 26655. (Éti­enne de La Boétie) La Mes­nagerie de Xenophon [trans­la­tion of Xenophon’s
. . . . . . . . . . Οἰκονομικός]
. . . . 26656. (Éti­enne de La Boétie) Regles de mariage de Plu­tar­que [trans­la­tion of Plutarch’s
. . . . . . . . . . Γαμικὰ παραγγέλματα]
. . . . 26657. (Éti­enne de La Boétie) Let­tre de con­so­la­tion de Plu­tar­que a sa femme
. . . . . . . . . . [trans­la­tion of Plutarch’s Παραμυθητικὸς πρὸς τὴν γυναῖκα]
. . . . 26658. (Michel de Mon­taigne) A Mon­seigneur Mon­sieur de L’Hospital, chan­cel­lier de
. . . . . . . . . . France [let­ter, 1570]
. . . . 26659. (Éti­enne de La Boétie) Stephani Boe­tiani Con­sil­iarii Regii in Par­la­mento Burdi
. . . . . . . . . . galensi Poe­mata [verse (in Latin)]
. . . . 26660. (Michel de Mon­taigne) A Mon­sieur de Foix, con­seiller du Roy en son con­seil
. . . . . . . . . . privé, et ambas­sadeur de Sa Majesté près la seigneurie de Venise [let­ter, 1570]
. . . . 26661. (Éti­enne de La Boétie) Vers François de feu Esti­enne De la Boetie, Con­seiller du
. . . . . . . . . . Roy en sa Cour de Par­lement à Bor­deaux [verse]
26662. (Ghe­o­rghe Lazarovici, et al) Tur­daş, C Sec­tor, Recon­struc­tion of Fea­tures for ST 29
. . . . . Based on Ethno-Archaeological Stud­ies [arti­cle]
Read more »

FILMSMARCH 2016

(Cameron 1991) Ter­mi­na­tor 2: Judg­ment Day
(Pol­cino 1997) The Simp­sons: Ep.173 ― The Canine Mutiny
(Kirk­land 1997) The Simp­sons: Ep.174 ― The Old Man and the Lisa
(Band 1982) Par­a­site
(Moore 1997) The Simp­sons: Ep.175 ― In Marge We Trust
(Mar­ton 1966) Around the World Under the Sea
(Gilbert 1962) H. M. S. Defi­ant [aka Damn the Defi­ant!
(Rear­don 1997) The Simp­sons: Ep.176 ― Homer’s Enemy
(New­ton 2014) Rick and Morty: Ep.5 ― Meeseeks and Destroy
(King 1940) The Case of the Fright­ened Lady

Read more »

First-time listening for March 2016

27390. (Gin­ger Baker) Stratavar­i­ous
27391. (Paul Hin­demith) Ludus Tonalis, Kon­tra­punk­tis­che, tonal, und Klaviertech­nis­che
. . . . . Übun­gen
27392. (Beat Hap­pen­ing) Music To Climb the Apple Tree By
27393. (Oneo­htrix Point Never) Gar­den of Delete
27394. (Of Mon­sters and Men) Live from Vat­na­garðar
27395. (Per Nørgård) Sym­phony #1 Sin­fo­nia austera
27396. (Break­ing Ben­jamin) Break­ing Ben­jamin EP
27397. (La Rue Kétanou) Ouvert à Dou­ble Tour
27398. (Of Mon­sters and Man) Beneath the Skin
27399. (Deftones) Like Linus [demo]
27400. (David Bowie) Sta­tion to Sta­tion [1999 remas­ter]
27401. (Pro­tomar­tyrs) Under Color of Offi­cial Right
27402. (Isak Katayev) Bukhar­ian Tajik Shash­maqom [Таджикский Шашмаком]

Read more »

READINGMARCH 2016

26617. (Jules Verne) Paris au xxe siè­cle [read in Eng­lish trans­la­tion at 18241]
26618. (Thijs Van Kolf­schoten, et al) Lower Pale­olithic Bone Tools from the “Spear Hori­zon”
. . . . . at Schönin­gen [arti­cle]
26619. (Marie-Anne Julien, et al) Char­ac­ter­iz­ing the Lower Pale­olithic Bone Indus­try from
. . . . . Schönin­gen 12 II: A Multi-proxy Study [arti­cle]
26620. (Jordi Serangeli & Nicholas J. Conard) The Behav­ioral and Cul­tural Strati­graphic
. . . . . Con­texts of the Lithic Assem­blages from Schönin­gen [arti­cle]
26621. (Veerle Rots, et al) Residue and Microwear Analy­ses of the Stone Arti­facts from
. . . . . Schönin­gen [arti­cle]
26622. (Ernest Bramah) The Secret of Head­lam Height [story]
26623. (Li Liu & Xing­can Chen) The Archae­ol­ogy of China from the Late Pale­olithic to the
. . . . . Early Bronze Age

Read more »